Photo by Ramon C. Purcell
Gordon Shurtleff plans his vacations around Rotary, making up club meetings wherever he lands. “It’s a quest for me,” he says, “to share the passion of Rotary.”
In June, he tallied his 200th club, the Rotary Club of Burbank, Calif. His visits span five countries and have allowed him to maintain a 40-year record of perfect attendance. The gregarious Shurtleff brings back ideas (and banners) and marvels that every club has its own personality. “I love learning about each club,” he says.
He stays in contact with Rotarians from all over the world, and those connections have proved valuable – most notably when his father-in-law had a heart attack while on a cruise in Mexico. Shurtleff flew with his wife to Acapulco and immediately contacted the local Rotary club; he credits the Rotarian doctor who was at his father-in-law’s bedside the next day with helping to save his life.
Shurtleff continues to hit the road, and his club count now stands at 202. “I like to get the message out – to take advantage of the benefits of meeting other members and going to other clubs and learning what they do,” he says.